Finding focus for your most important and impactful tasks might be one of the biggest challenges of the workday. As schedules fill up, meetings overlap, and priorities mount, multitasking may seem to be the best way to be productive. But when we aren’t able to bring our full attention to the task at hand, we often end up being less productive. There are many ways to find workday focus; we’ve rounded up a few below.
Amp up the ambient sound
Some may feel most present during a quiet moment in solitude; for others, getting grounded and focused can be done with ambient sound. Published studies have shown that a moderate level of ambient noise can boost creativity. For example, a soundscape (such as rain on leaves or peaceful forest sounds) may help block out distractions to get you to a state of flow during focus hours.
Try mindfulness meditation
One of the best ways to develop the ability to focus and concentrate is through mindfulness meditation. Setting aside even 10 minutes every day for this type of practice could have a positive effect on your workday. Through mindfulness meditation practice, we gain a greater awareness of the present moment. Through becoming more in tune with ourselves—our feelings, thoughts, reactions, etc.—a keen sense of focus is a happy side effect.
Make playlists part of the mix
Listening to curated music playlists can help you get into the working groove, whether your workplace is in an office or a designated spot at home. Specialized playlists of low-fi beats or classical music are known for helping focus, in addition to blocking out other auditory distractions.
Take a breath
Intentional breathing is a quick way to tap into a mindful state simply by checking in with our own breathing pattern. A cleansing round of inhales and exhales can negate overwhelm, bringing us back to the here and now. Between deadlines, meetings, emails, and assignments, it’s easy to get caught up in dissecting a past interaction or preparing for the next task during our working hours. Noticing how we’re breathing can immediately draw us back to where we are. Taking a few rounds of slow, intentional breath is a way to increase focus throughout the workday.
Don’t forget to rest your mind. Taking small breaks after focus periods allows for restoration of the body and mind before jumping to the next task.
From ambient sound and meditation to breath work and music playlists, there are so many ways to attain workday focus. Finding different avenues to strengthen your presence and awareness is key to creating mental health habits. Calm for Business offers the most diverse library of content to strengthen your mind for working hours and beyond—learn more here.